Draft Bradford District Local Plan - Preferred Options (Regulation 18) February 2021

Ended on the 24 March 2021
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5.0 Introduction – Shaping Places

5.0.1 This section of the document sets out at a local area or community level how the local plan is intending to support sustainable development through the allocation of new sites for homes and jobs, while preserving and enhancing the quality of local places and the natural and built environments.

5.0.2 The focus within this section of the plan continues to be on maximising our brownfield and regeneration opportunities and ensuring growth is sustainably located in terms public transport, routes for cycling and walking and accessible to shops, services and community facilities, including schools and health facilities.

5.0.3 It is important that we all have a role to play in shaping the places we live and work within and this plan sets out initial 'spatial visions' for local areas. This is not a closed conversation and representations are encouraged about how new growth can best shape local places and create the right patterns of development for the District over the next 18-20 years.

Area Profiles and Strategies

5.0.4 The District has been broken down into a series of local areas to facilitate a better understanding for land use planning purposes of local issues and opportunities and the location of new housing and employment site options. Much of these local areas are defined at a settlement scale, however within larger urban areas including Bradford and Keighley these have been broken down into a scale of analysis which is broadly similar to electoral wards.

5.0.5 An important pre-curser of planning for new growth is better understanding what are the key features and potential issues in a local area to allow for a comprehensive approach to be undertaken. This section of the plan includes a series of area profiles or spatial portraits covering local information about population, economy and employment; transport and accessibility; housing; natural, historic and open space features, together with key local community infrastructure, such as schools and health.

5.0.6 The profiles have been informed through the use of local plan evidence base work on for example open space and heritage but have also been developed by utilising specialist data gathering software – Local Insight[1], which allows for research into a wide range of socio-economic and demographic information at a local level. The Local Insight guides are published as part of the evidence base to the plan.

5.0.7 Following on from the spatial portraits, the plan sets out a series of local area strategies or spatial visions for the future direction of plan-making at a local level. These area strategies attempt to knit together various important themes in terms of the future direction of growth through allocations, but also other key local features and characteristics which need to form part of wider place-making. The local area strategies include the location of site allocations for housing and employment uses, which are then further detailed as a series of supporting tables and site pro formas.

Preferred Site Allocations

5.0.8 The site pro formas are an important element of the plan and provide information on preferred site allocations and the rationale for their selection. This is presented as summary information within the main body of the local plan, but the assessment of preferred sites has included a very extensive analysis of over 70 criteria supported by a defined site assessment methodology.

5.0.9 The site threshold for inclusion as an allocation within the plan is 0.20ha or 5 units net for housing and 0.25ha or 500m2 of floorspace for employment and the source list of the original sites evaluated included:

  • former (unimplemented) development plan (RUDP) allocations;
  • sites with planning permission and extracted from the Council's Employment and Housing Land Registers;
  • call for sites submissions – the Council have issued previous calls for sites as part of its Strategic Land Availability Assessment (SLAA) work and received a large number of submissions from land owners, developers and members of the public;
  • sites identified through survey work;
  • sites identified through master plans and neighbourhood regeneration plans, and
  • sites identified through the Council's asset review – land or buildings which the Council considers are surplus to requirements.

5.0.10 One of the key starting points for the site assessment has been the prioritisation of sites to focus first upon:

  • lower flood risk;
  • the use of brownfield land within settlements and
  • the location of sites within regeneration areas.

Once this initial prioritised pool of sites was exhausted to meet defined housing and employment needs, further sites where drawn forward and included within the site evaluation work. The evaluation work was also supplemented by updating site delivery information through a questionnaire to landowners and promoters.

5.0.11 The site assessment methodology is further detailed in the technical evidence supporting the plan but continues the theme of maximising brownfield growth in sustainable locations. Information on the newly published and integrated Land Availability Assessment (LAA) which looks at land within the District at a strategic scale is also published alongside the plan.

5.0.12 Preferred site options information only is presented within the main body of this plan. Information on rejected sites and the rationale for their discounting is included within Appendix x to the site assessment methodology and associated plans x to x.

5.0.13 It is important that the approach to meeting housing and other needs is reasonable and reflective of local circumstances. The plan recognises that not all planning permissions will be built out and not all allocations will be developed. In this regard a 10% discount has been applied to carried forward planning permissions and the same level of discount has been applied to the preferred allocations to ensure that the level of growth indicated in the plan will meet minimum requirements. These blunt measures will be fine-tuned as the plan progresses forward.

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